The Federal High Court, Lagos, has ordered the remand of three traders in prison, over alleged fraud of N26.6m and issuance of dud cheques.
The traders ordered to be remanded in prison custody by Justice N. Ayo-Emmanuel are: Victor Joseph Bassey, Ikechukwu Augustine Enedu and Adeyinka Lawani.
The three defendants were arraigned before the court on nine- counts charge bordering on conspiracy, obtaining goods valued N26.6m, issuance of dud cheques and money laundering, by the Police’s Special Fraud Unit (SFU) Alagbon-Ikoyi, Lagos.
Arraigning the defendants alongside a company, Fusion 3 Renewable International Limited before the court, the prosecutor, Mr. Chukwu Agwu, told the court that the traders and others now at large on October 26, 2016, conspired among themselves to commit the said offences.
In particular, Agwu informed the court that the defendants with an intent to defraud, obtained armoured cable valued in the said amount from AZ Grant Investment Limited represented by one China Marcellus Ezeanochie.
He also told the court that as part a of ploy to defraud the company, the defendants issued several Access Bank’s cheques which were rejected and returned and dishonoured when presented for withdrawal for lack of sufficient fund in their accounts.
The three defendants according to the prosecutor, were also alleged to have sometime in October 2017, received the sum of N40 million, through their Access Bank Plc account number 0692615407, and fraudulently diverted the sum of N26, 642, 500 million out of the money belonging to AZ Investment Limited represented by one China Marcellus Ezeanochie, to Fusion 3 Renewable International Limited’s account.
The offences according to the prosecutor, Mr. Agwu are contrary to 8(a),1(1)(c)(2) and 3 of the Advance Fee Fraud and other relates Offences Act, 2006; Sections 1(1)(a)(b)(I) and (ii) of the Dishonoured Cheque (Offences) Act, 2004; and section 15(2)(a)(d)(3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011, as amended in 2012.
The three defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Following their plea, their lawyers, urged the court to admit them to bail. Their lawyer told the court that the bail applications of their clients have been served on the prosecution.
After hearing arguments on the bail applications, Justice Ayo- Emmanuel, admitted each of the defendants to bail in the sum of N2 million with two sureties each.
The sureties were to be landed property owners within the court’s jurisdiction, with three years tax and means of livelihood. All the bail terms are to be verified by the court’s Deputy Chief Registrar (DCR).
Justice Ayo-Emmanuel while adjourning the matter till February 5, 2019, for trial, ordered that the defendants be remanded in prison custody pending fulfillment of the bail conditions.